Joining the crowds
Trip Start Aug 29, 2004
7Trip End Sep 12, 2004
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After finally settling in at Pondok Lodge, a refreshing (i.e. cold) shower, and a walking tour of the Golden Triangle (which included dropping in at a cybercaf to cool down & e-contact home), jet lag hit me hard: I fell into a deep sleep at 6 PM only to be woken up around midnight by the fireworks in celebration of Malaysia's independence, realising I had missed my "date" and food...
Today, on this celibratory day, I slept in a bit (until 7:30), but felt inclined not too indulge too much, as there was (free) breakfast to be had and sightseeing to be done
The ususal LP map accuracy (or is it me?) led me to walk substantially more than described. Alas, I did have a close look at the old railway station, the mosque, Merdaka Square (missed the parade, but not that special breed of people that force you in their photos - ever wondered why this happens?), chinatown (all of it), Central Market (where I should have been last night) and all the rest (check LP if you like ;-)). Apparently, I didn't spend enough time gawping at temples and therefore was left a bit of time to head down to and take the obligatory pic of the Petronas (Twin) Towers before having to head back to Pondok Lodge to collect my stuff and leave for the night train to Wakaf Baharu.
Of course, on this public holiday I was not the only one at the Towers. Oh no, I was there with what seemed half of the Malaysian population, which was not too big a problem until I, too, wanted to leave again: daunting looking crowds in front of the ticketing machines and the train doors. Still, I made it back to Pondok Lodge in time to not only have a shower, but also read LP and do some e-mailing. Then a most courteous Mr. Amirthalingam drove me to the railway station and after an interesting conversation invited me back to Kuala Lumpur to stay with his family. (Note to self: must send him a postcard.)
I mentioned skipping dinner last night, didn't I? Worse still, today I finally found some food at... KFC. Soon enough it was time to board the train, where tucked in my (2nd class) berth with crisp sheets, I tried my very best to get some sleep...